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Story by Ian Guerin
No round is complete without a chance to go big. The Perfect Round’s par 5s have done that and more.
The project, spearheaded by Myrtle Beach Golf Trips with the help of the South Carolina Golf Course Ratings Panel, selected the best 18 holes along South Carolina’s Grand Strand. It includes the four most impressive par 5s available in Myrtle Beach: Dunes Golf & Beach Club’s famed “Waterloo,” the closing hole at TPC of Myrtle Beach, Caledonia Golf & Fish Club’s 10th hole and No. 9 at Prestwick Country Club.
Here’s what took each of them to the top of the panel’s rankings.
PRESTWICK COUNTRY CLUB NO. 9
With significant mounding up the right side of the hole on No. 9, Pete and P.B. Dye decided to stick with the status quo all the way to the green. What it left players facing was a pair of bunkers that look more like entrances to a cave than sand traps. It adds to a visual overload magnified by the pond the 537-yard hole bends around on the left and the two-story clubhouse awaiting just beyond the edge of the playing surface of the third-hardest hole at Prestwick.
CALEDONIA GOLF & FISH CLUB NO. 10
The start of the back nine makes infinitely more sense after it is played. Caledonia’s 10th can theoretically be shot in a straight-line approach; however, the wide waste bunker that chews up the final third of the right side of the hole changes styles in a heartbeat, although it is frequently noticed too late to immediately correct any problems. Planning ahead on this 553 yarder (from the back tees) prompts most to stay to the left and feel comfortable with a more realistic chance of landing the green in three or four.
TPC OF MYRTLE BEACH NO. 18
With a clear view of the beautiful white clubhouse directly ahead, it’s easy to lose sight of the needs on TPC’s finishing hole. That’s a crucial mistake for many first-timers, as hitting the primary and secondary fairways - divided by only a sliver of grass by seemingly miles apart - makes all the difference in the final score. Players who reach that second tier have a legitimate shot at reaching in two, although it is still no guarantee. The green juts slightly into the left-side pond, with banks and bunkers on the right destroying many more eagle dreams.
DUNES GOLF & BEACH CLUB NO. 13
As famous as certain Myrtle Beach golf holes can boast to be, No. 13 at Dunes may stake claim to the biggest argument of all. Nicknamed “Waterloo,” the 13th here proves to be unlucky for most. The hole wraps a full 90 degrees around Lake Singleton, and after some distance was added to the back tees during a recent renovation project, it plays as long as 640 yards. Those who aren’t at that level are still asked to fly the lake at some point, at least if they have any aspirations of a sub-par finish.